K'taka govt to submit before SC need for exceeding quota cap

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Bengaluru, Mar 22 (PTI): Karnataka government on Monday decided to submit to the Supreme Court that it was necessary to exceed the 50 per cent cap on reservation as social dynamics have changed and aspirations of the backward class increased, official sources said.

The decision was taken at a meeting of the state Cabinet held under the leadership of Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa.

'Regarding the Indira Sahwney case judgement that caps the quota at 50 per cent, there are three reasons why it should be exceeded - several constitutional amendments have happened, several state governments have done it, and social dynamics have changed,' said an official source.

'So, there is a necessity to give more than 50 per cent.

Also, aspirations of the backward class have increased. This is our submission. It would have been submitted this evening,' the source said.

The top court is examining issues including whether the landmark 1992 judgement in Indra Sawhney case, also known as the Mandal verdict which caps quota at 50 per cent, requires a re-look by a larger bench 'in the light of subsequent Constitutional amendments, judgements and changed social dynamics of society.' It has sought responses from states.

Karnataka at present provides 15 per cent reservation for SCs, 3 per cent for STs and 32 per cent for the other backward classes (OBC), which add upto 50 per cent.

The government's submission to the apex court has come amidst pressure from various communities to revise the existing reservation.

State Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Basavaraj Bommai had recently indicated in the Assembly that it was inevitable to breach the 50 per cent cap on quota if demands of various communities are to be fulfilled.

Facing demands for revision, the government has set up a three-member high-level committee headed by a retired High Court judge to look into demands and advise the government.

The SCs have demanded an increase in their quota from 15 per cent to 17 per cent and the STs from 3 per cent to 7.5 per cent.

While the backward Kuruba community is seeking ST tag, Panchamasalis, a sub-sect of the dominant Veerashaiva- Lingayat community, wants to be included in category 2A (15 per cent) of OBC reservation matrix.

They are currently included under 3B (5 per cent). PTI KSU NVG NVG